Questions tagged [weather]

Weather means the atmospheric conditions, including wind, temperature and precipitation, in a specific area at a specific time.

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Why did this flight from Moscow to Helsinki divert to Riga and then fly back to Helsinki in a few hours?

I noticed an unusually large aircraft overhead approaching HEL, which happened to be an An-124-100. I looked at its flight history and saw that it had tried to land earlier on the same day, but ...
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Why did my LGA-ORD flight make an S-shaped turn round the time it was passing a storm?

On a recent United UA1709 flight into Chicago (hit by a heavy storm at the time), I felt a noticeable descent, combined with two wide banks around 1 hour before landing. Looking at the flight path, I ...
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How do pilots avoid thunderstorms at night over the pacific en route to Australia where there is no radar? And what if a large front develops?

While there is some limited radar on board for pilots, we hear that there is no radar over the ocean which is why flight locations are estimated. As the distance between the United States and ...
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153 views

What to do if trapped on top VFR?

In the event that, despite his best efforts, a VFR-only pilot has gotten trapped on top of a solid cloud layer, what is(are) the safest course(s) of action? For example, consider a long cross-country ...
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78 views

How to avoid getting trapped on top VFR?

This question addresses whether it is legal to fly VFR over-the-top. One of the comments mentioned the difference between safety and legality, i.e. doing so may not be safe even if it is legal (in ...
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1answer
98 views

What fomula use for calculating pressure altitude?

I'm having some trouble making my calculations of pressure altitude match those in apps and text books. I'm using the formula from Wikipedia: (29.92 - altimeter setting) * 1000 + airport elevation ...
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27 views

Where can I find NWS Surface Analysis charts?

It seems that a lot of documentation for getting the 'big picture' for aviation weather refers to 'Surface Analysis Charts'. For example AC 00-45H 4.1 talks about NWS Surface Analysis charts. However ...
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1answer
161 views

What is the difference between ACARS and ADS-B?

What is the difference between ACARS and ADS-B? For weather information in-flight or pre-flight which one is used?
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Does the coriolis force have an effect on the direction in which an aircraft travels?

Suppose an aircraft is flying from Kenya (which lies on the equator) to UK (which lies in the northern hemisphere). Does the Coriolis force veer the aircraft to the right? Do pilots have to correct ...
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130 views

Can you continue an ILS approach when weather falls below minimum?

If, after passing the final approach fix, weather deteriorates so that the reported values are now below required minima, is it allowed to continue the approach?
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105 views

What is the reasoning behind this question about the correct altitude to avoid clear icing?

This question has been killing me for a while and it's an original PPL question: You are approaching to an airmass with a temperature of 6 C at 10000ft. Which altitude should you be in order to ...
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73 views

Why jet stream is stronger in winter?

I notice in a website taling about jetstream https://www.weather.gov/jetstream/jet It says: The winds blow from west to east in jet streams but the flow often shifts to the north and south. ...
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Can airflow reverse over the flight surfaces of a uav in high wind conditions

Can airflow reverse over the wing of a uav in high tail winds and low forward airspeed i.e 25knt fwd airspeed in a 35 knt tailwind? What would be the overall effect on the elevator and rudder? I ...
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Approach when weather condition is below minimum

If airport weather condition is below minimum, but pilot report that flight weather condition is above minimum, Does controller can issue approach clearance to pilot? If weather condition get worse ...
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NEXRAD—why is it 2D?

If you paid attention to NEXRAD training, you know that the colors of pixels show the maximum activity at any altitude in that air column. (It’s a “composite” view.) NEXRAD itself samples in three ...
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How did pilots avoid thunderstorms and related weather before “reliable” airborne weather radar was introduced on airliners?

How did airline and or mail pilots avoid hazardous weather especially at night before airborne weather radar systems were in use?
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Does an uncovered naval aircraft suffer any weathering affects?

This question is for WW2-era naval aircraft. I noticed that some cruisers and battleships carried a couple seaplanes, launched by catapult and recovered with cranes. Obviously these are unprotected ...
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What does NSC mean in a METAR?

Here's a METAR: SCEL 090000Z 15005KT 5000 HZ NSC 10/08 Q1020 NOSIG What does NSC mean?
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When do flights get cancelled due to fog?

When flights get cancelled due to fog, what triggers the cancellation? Fog is too thick, too wide-spread, blocks the view of tall buildings or other landmarks? Or is the problem the type of air ...
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1answer
108 views

What kind of input is used by NASA's TASAR?

I've found the Aviation SE to be a really interesting read so far, I'm excited to be here! I'm fairly new, but I'm also old! What are the inputs for TASAR to crunch flight path optimization? Is it ...
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69 views

What the weather condition can affect for flight? [closed]

What is the most disturbing weather conditions for flight? On another word: what more dangerous for takeoff/landing: wind, precipitation or something else?
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What does the future of the weather radars look like?

Planes had weather radars for a long time (Dassault Falcon and Learjet35A) which was useful since you either had to ask ATC, listen the ATIS frequency or ask the flight advisory before flight planning ...
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What is an “all-weather” aircraft?

I've read a few times that such-and-such a plane is an "all-weather" aircraft, for example: The McDonnell Douglas F/A-18 Hornet is a twin-engine, supersonic, all-weather, carrier-capable, multirole ...
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261 views

What are the duration of TAFs?

TAFs (terminal aerodrome forecast) have different durations. Some forecasts 30 hours into the future while others forecasts only 24 hours. But what is the shortest and longest TAFs? and how often are ...
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362 views

What is the relation between clouds and radar effectiveness?

Recently, India's prime minister Narendra Modi commented on how cloudy weather can help a fighter jet escape from radar. Is there any technical reasoning to back these comments? Here is the quote ...
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270 views

For an airport to be designated as an IFR alternate, does it have to have a TAF?

For an airport to be designated as an IFR alternate, does it have to have a terminal aerodrome forecast at the alternate airport to confirm that the forecast 600-2 and 800-2 will be in place at the ...
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1answer
237 views

Why is a small amount of smooth ice over the top of the wing more dangerous than an accumulation on the leading edge?

According to a Gleim study guide, "Generally speaking, smooth ice on top of the wing is more dangerous than heavy accumulated icing on the leading edge." Is this true? If this is true, why?
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Are there more accidents in winter months, and if so, why?

I was watching The Flight Channel videos and have noticed that the accidents seem to happen more often in winter months (for the Northern Hemisphere). Are there some statistics to back this claim? It ...
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1answer
493 views

What is the meaning of R88/70D in this METAR from Ashgabat International airport?

The following METAR is from Ashgabat airport (UTAA) UTAA 071300Z 13006KT 9999 FEW050CB BKN050 BKN100 15/06 Q1013 R88/70D NOSIG What does R88/70D mean, I couldn't find any references?
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1answer
160 views

Is navigation around thunderheads done at the pilot's discretion?

It's my understanding that if a pilot is flying over an ocean or otherwise uncontrolled airspace and they encounter a cumulonimbus, they navigate around it at their discretion. How does this happen ...
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What is the purpose of including sea level pressure and temperature in a METAR?

In a METAR such as this one: KGOK 161553Z AUTO 18011KT 4SM BR OVC007 07/05 A3011 RMK AO2 SLP201 T00670050 Translated to: Jan 16, 1553Z, Automated. Mist, Wind from 180° at 11 knots, 4 statute ...
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115 views

How is the effect of wind on arrival time handled?

If a commercial plane encounters strong tailwinds, would the pilots set the autopilot for a fixed arrival time (if that is possible), or would it be ok to arrive way ahead of schedule? I imagine ...
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130 views

When is a high pressure system associated with IFR/MVFR conditions?

So I've read that typically high pressure systems bring good weather and clear skies. However, for the current high pressure system we're experiencing in central USA, we're having quite a bit of IFR/...
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Can a SIGMET last less than initially forecasted?

Lets say I have a SIGMET that says VALID 310800/311200. Is it possible that by 1100 the SIGMET would not be active anymore or it will always be valid until the published end time?
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Did AF447 cross dangerous weather?

question Did the Air France 447 pilots endanger the passengers by not diverting around but flying straight through the weather system encountered and pictured below ? Or was this a defendable, ...
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1answer
362 views

When do pilots facing bad weather turn back (U-turn)?

Passenger aircraft are not supposed to cross red areas on the weather radar. But what if the weather system is too large to circumnavigate and red areas inside the system are too large/prevalent to ...
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Are winds that are not from the prevailing wind direction more often gusty, and why?

It seems to me that, looking at the ground weather forecasts (as opposed to, say, low level forecasts), it's far more common for the wind to be predicted to be significantly gusty when it is blowing ...
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3answers
565 views

How do pilots decide whether to circumnavigate bad weather?

How does an airline pilot decide in the air whether to circumnavigate or fly through bad weather visibly looming ahead and/or displayed on the weather radar ?
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What is the specific FAA regulation with regards to a pilot dropping jumpers into a solid cloud base? [duplicate]

What is the FAA regulation with regards to a pilot dropping jumpers into a solid cloud base? I saw some parachute jumpers come through a solid cloud layer with a base at around 1300 AGL. They landed ...
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248 views

Do any civilian aircraft use AESA or PESA for weather radar?

Are there any weather radars in civilian aircraft that uses active or passive array techniques? I know that the most of the radar used in the civilian aircraft use doppler effect and latest military ...
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1answer
305 views

What if the tower Is obstructed by clouds?

I know towers use radar to watch aircraft, obviously. But what about ground controllers? What if their view is obstructed by a low cloud level/fog? Is there such a thing as ground-based traffic ...
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2answers
63 views

Remote access to Area Forecast Discussion

Is it possible to access Area Forecast Discussion via SMS? I fly to remote areas frequently (Wilderness), and after several days, it is almost impossible to get a good weather forecast, (one you're ...
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Diversions because of fog: What are the reasons?

It's fog season again around my local airport MUC (EDDM), and I have noticed a number of diversions recently. Some planes were holding a bit before attempting to land, performed a go around and then ...
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1answer
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With wind, what will a perfectly circular flight path relative to the surrounding air look like from the ground? [duplicate]

Let's suppose that an airplane flying at a uniform airspeed follows a perfect, level, closed circular trajectory with respect to the mass of air. Now, seen from the ground, and in the presence of a ...
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How long does a wind shear last?

I've got a job interview next week and the interviewer asked my colleagues this question. I didn't find the answer online, I personally don't think that there is a certain duration for a wind shear ...
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158 views

What should I look for in weather reports in order to pick a day for glider flying?

I understand weather can change unexpectedly, and local sky condition (e.g. cloud types) can't be predicted, but if I want to fly glider at a specific location, say, some time next week, and use ...
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Do IFR / VFR weather minimums include ceilings?

I'm not really sure how to ask my question, but there are classifications for weather conditions for MVFR, IFR, and LIFR. The FAA also has weather minimums for flying VFR in the different airspaces ...
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How did this air force plane likely get into the eye of Hurricane Florence? [duplicate]

The annotation for this CNN video says Air Force plane flies into Hurricane Florence Watch as a US Air Force plane flies into the eye of Hurricane Florence to collect weather data for the ...
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Is the size of hail on the ground any indication of the winds and updrafts of a thunderstorm?

Is there any rule of thumb or way to estimate the wind speeds or up and down drafts inside a storm by the size of hail that reaches the ground?
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363 views

Can small planes see lights on the ground?

I live about 5 miles from a small airport. At night, during rain or snow storms when I imagine there would be poor visibility, I always turn our outside house lights on, in case they could possibly ...